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What Not To Say To Someone Going Through Infertility

What Not To Say To Someone Going Through Infertility

The world is full of hurtful comments said by others.  Many times these comments are said by are closest friends and relatives. 

When we go through difficult times, misunderstandings ensue.

If we haven’t gone through a difficult situation ourselves, we find it hard to relate too. 

That’s were hurtful comments come out.  We don’t mean to say hurtful things, we’re only trying to help. 

But that’s how feeling get hurt.

When someone is going through infertility, comments both rude and hurtful come out.  

Yes many people are just trying to help.  But the problem is… When you haven’t gone through infertility you don’t know what it’s like. 

I dealt with this all through my 2- and 1/2-year journey of infertility. 

Hurtful comments from friends and family still have a lasting affect on me till this day.  

If you have a friend or family member struggling with infertility, there’s many things you don’t want to say. 

You may only be trying to help, but some comments just hurt more than you know.  

Let’s look at some things NOT to say to someone going through infertility!

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What NOT To Say To Someone Going Through Infertility

“Have You Tried The ____ Position To Get Pregnant Faster?”

While this may seem like a harmless and possibly helpful comment, giving someone unsolicited advice like this makes conversation really awkward.  

When your trying to conceive and month after month you’re not getting pregnant, you try anything to conceive. 

Trust me there’s probably not a single natural fertility tip that couples struggling with infertility haven’t tried.

During my infertility journey, my husband and I tried every position possible.  But guess what?  

Trying new positions is only for fun when you have infertility. 

New positions are not going to help anyone get pregnant faster if they have a fertility issue.

Although certain positions like missionary with elevated hips will allow gravity to help move sperm closer to the cervix…  If a couple is struggling with low sperm count, the position won’t really help.

That’s why when you cannot get pregnant naturally, you move onto fertility treatment.

Telling someone to try certain sex positions to increase their odds is like giving them false hope.  Odds are…

The position will not help their situation.  Plus, talking to someone about personal matters like sex position with your spouse tends to cross the line.


“You Could Always Adopt!”

 It’s hard for me to even begin to explain just how insensitive this comment is.  

First off, adoption is a lot of money… 

While you can adopt a child within the foster care system for around $10,000, many times the children are much older. 

For many couples struggling with infertility, they are wanting a baby to see grow up from a very young age.  

Adoption within the United States stands between $8,000 to $40,000. 

Then there’s international adoption which can well exceed $40,000.  

I don’t know about you, but I don’t have that kind of cash just laying around.  

For my personal fertility journey, my fertility treatment per month cost ranged between $600 to $1,200. 

This all depends on fertility tests I need done, travel expenses, and fertility medications.  This is a lot more affordable then compared to adoption.

Secondly, adopting a child is not the same as having your own child with your own DNA.  

Don’t get me wrong… I think anyone that adopts children are beautiful people who’ve completely changed a young life through love. 

But for those with infertility, adoption is an EXTREMELY hard decision to make.

Choosing to adopt as a result of infertility is not an easy choice.  Many couples come to the decision to adopt only after all other fertility treatment has failed. 

Once you reach this point in fertility treatment, it’s difficult to switch gears and just adopt.  

I do admire couples with or without fertility issues who adopt a child.  

For my own family my husband and I wanted to go through the experience of being pregnant. 

To see my belly and child grow.  To give birth and see your baby from day one. 

Adoption doesn’t give you the same experience of going through pregnancy.

Related Articles: The Real Cost Of Infertility

6 Lessons Learned From Infertility

6 (More) Lessons I Learned From Infertility

“If You’re So Stressed Out, Just Stop Trying For Awhile.”

Infertility is severely stressful in general.  But when you make the move from trying naturally on your own to fertility treatment, the stress get’s worse.  

During fertility treatment your life revolves around doctor appointments, fertility testing, ovulation, inseminations and medications. 

The stress of infertility treatment tends to weigh even worse on your heart.

Just me every month after a failed cycle, I wanted to give up. 

But I couldn’t.  I kept going through treatment every month hoping that month would be the month.  

You see… It wasn’t an option “just to stop trying for awhile.”  Each month I stopped trying, I was assured that I wouldn’t get pregnant. 

Every time I wanted to stop treatment I’d ask myself, “Is this the month I could finally have a baby?”

“Well You Never Know… You Could Get Pregnant On Your Own.”

This is probably one of the most hurtful statements I heard during infertility. 

While I appreciate someone having faith in my husband and I to conceive naturally, it won’t happen.

For couples without fertility issues it takes up to 12 months to conceive naturally.  

If a couple has an infertility issue, the chances of conceiving naturally within 12 months or longer are greatly reduced. 

Maybe my husband and I could get pregnant by simply not trying one day…. But I don’t put hope in that.

What if we never got treatment and went all our lives without conceiving on our own? 

The answer is: We might never have the children we have today without fertility treatment.

“Just Have Sex More.”

Just having sex more is NOT a solution for getting pregnant. 

In fact, couples who have male factor infertility actually decrease their odds on conceiving each month if they have sex more often.

That’s because sperm count and mobility is already low.  It takes an average of about 72 hours to produce new sperm. 

Since sperm count is already low, it will get even lower by having sex more often.

Plus, after 12 months or more of trying to conceive sex when trying to conceive becomes more of a chore then for pleasure.

“It’s All In God’s Timing.”

Although I don’t talk about it much on Pitter Patter of Baby Feet, I’m a believer in Jesus. 

But I don’t talk about my relationship with Jesus for two reasons: I believe it’s a personal relationship between Him and I and I don’t want to push my beliefs onto others.

I’m not ashamed to admit that I’m a believer.  Hearing comments like this during infertility hurt.  

Yes, I do believe in God’s timing.  But when your going through a difficult situation like infertility, it’s hard to just let go and let God handle it all.  

When I heard this comment one thought always came to mind: “What if God’s plan for me is to never have children?”  

You see many people try and try for years for a baby and end up never having children. 

I never wanted to go through my life without children.  I knew in my heart I was meant to be a mother.  

During infertility I had to choose to fight for my family.  I believe this is how God wanted us to have a family. 

Having to go through infertility made my family stronger.

Related Articles: The 15 Best Books To Help You Through Infertility

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Final Thoughts

Many times these kinds of hurtful comments are said because a friend or relative is trying to be helpful. 

Words on comfort from one person doesn’t have the same comfort when said to another.

It’s difficult to offer advice to someone going through infertility if you yourself have never gone through it. 

Infertility in itself is hard to discuss with others.  It brings about many pains and sorrows.

But sometimes the best thing to say to someone who’s going through infertility is to say nothing at all. 

A listening ear is sometimes the best thing you can give a friend going through a difficult time.

When I was going through infertility, I just wanted a friend.  A shoulder to cry on.  Someone to listen and to tell me everything was going to be ok. 

Someone who would support me and encourage me to continue when I wanted to give up on having a baby.

Be that friend to someone going through infertility.  Instead of offering advice that comes out as hurtful comments…

Just listen and try and understand how that personal is suffering inside.


Works Cited

12 things not to say to someone with infertility


Friday 12th of July 2019

thanks for this

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